Author Topic: SpaceX is hiring a farmer  (Read 18136 times)

Offline Robotbeat

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SpaceX is hiring a farmer
« on: 10/11/2014 01:35 AM »
So, there's this job listing:
http://www.spacex.com/careers/position/5749
Quote
FARMER

 

RESPONSIBILITIES:

Plan finances and production to maintain farm progress against budget parameters
Perform practical farm activities, e.g. driving tractors, operating machinery, spraying fields, etc.
Procure equipment and supplies, e.g. tractors, implements, fertilizer and seed
Perform or arrange for the maintenance and repair of machinery and equipment
Maintain, monitor, and perform actions as necessary to increase the quality of crop yield
Locate and manage outside contractors when necessary, e.g. harvesting, aerial spraying.
Understand the implications of the weather and make contingency plans
Apply health and safety standards across the farm, as well as ensure that farm activities comply with government regulations
Use electronic spreadsheets to keep financial records up to date
Other duties as assigned
 

BASIC QUALIFICATIONS:

Minimum of 10 years of row crop farming experience in the central Texas area which shall include a working knowledge of every process required for crop production in the region
Experience in repair and preventative maintenance of John Deere agricultural equipment
High school diploma or general education degree (GED)
 

PREFERRED SKILLS AND EXPERIENCE:

Valid Class A Commercial Driverís License
Positive relationships with suppliers and contractors in the area
Texas Applicator License or sufficient requirements necessary to obtain such
 

ADDITIONAL REQUIREMENTS:

Valid Driverís License, and a clean driving record
Must be able to climb ladders and work in tight spaces.
Required to exert physical effort in handling objects up to 50 pounds
Required to be exposed to physical environment which involves dirt, odors, noise, weather extremes or similar elements most of the work day
Must be able to work an extremely flexible schedule with extra hours as needed by business demands; typically, SpaceX employees work a minimum 50 hour week.  This position will be required to work around test schedules as necessary to ensure the successful crop production does not interfere with testing progress.
Chris  Whoever loves correction loves knowledge, but he who hates reproof is stupid.

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Online Eer

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Re: SpaceX is hiring a farmer
« Reply #1 on: 10/11/2014 01:51 AM »
Is this to manage the herd of space cows we see from time to time, or to supply fresh consumables for the commissary?

Offline Llian Rhydderch

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Re: SpaceX is hiring a farmer
« Reply #2 on: 10/11/2014 01:54 AM »
... I like how the job is ITAR restricted...

Well, based on a number of papers I've read by former Soviet economists that were published (shall we say, in the bit more free & open academic environment) after the mid-1990s, it would not surprise me in the least that US agricultural production technology is a tad more advanced.   ;D

Still, hard to imagine any of it on the US Munitions List and subject to ITAR.   :P
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Offline Robotbeat

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Re: SpaceX is hiring a farmer
« Reply #3 on: 10/11/2014 01:55 AM »
Is this to manage the herd of space cows we see from time to time, or to supply fresh consumables for the commissary?
Row farming, so definitely not cattle.
Chris  Whoever loves correction loves knowledge, but he who hates reproof is stupid.

To the maximum extent practicable, the Federal Government shall plan missions to accommodate the space transportation services capabilities of United States commercial providers. US law http://goo.gl/YZYNt0

Offline jamesh9000

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Re: SpaceX is hiring a farmer
« Reply #4 on: 10/11/2014 02:02 AM »
I like to think there's a local guy there who's been crazy about space all his life, got real excited about Spacex coming to Texas, and thought 'man, I'd love to work for them, but there's no reason why they'd ever hire a farmer', and now he's just absolutely wetting himself in excitement.

Offline Norm38

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Re: SpaceX is hiring a farmer
« Reply #5 on: 10/11/2014 02:18 AM »
How much land do they actually own at McGregor.  I always figured that the herd of cattle was grazing on non-SpaceX land.  Are they simply giving out grazing rights?

Maybe the ranchers aren't happy?  Cows that run around a lot have tougher meat, so the ranchers don't want to renew?  If that is their land, they could easily grow corn where the cows currently run.  But they'd just rent the land, unless none of the neighbors farm. 

I'm an Iowa farm boy. You can always find someone to grow corn on your land in Iowa.  Maybe not at McGregor?

Offline Zed_Noir

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Re: SpaceX is hiring a farmer
« Reply #6 on: 10/11/2014 02:27 AM »
Maybe SpaceX is doing a stealth fence building. Could see rows of maize or something similar on the property perimeter blocking line of sight for nosy photographers.  ;)

...
Maybe the ranchers aren't happy?  Cows that run around a lot have tougher meat, so the ranchers don't want to renew?
...
From the posts on the SpaceX Texas thread, the Space Cows are not impressed by the rocket testings.  ;D

Offline darkenfast

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Re: SpaceX is hiring a farmer
« Reply #7 on: 10/11/2014 02:59 AM »
All I could think of when I saw this thread is Heinlein's "Farmer in the Sky"!  I read that back in the mid-60's and never forgot it (even if it's a little dated now).

Offline scienceguy

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Re: SpaceX is hiring a farmer
« Reply #8 on: 10/11/2014 04:10 AM »
Obviously Spacex is planning for farming on Mars
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Offline vt_hokie

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Re: SpaceX is hiring a farmer
« Reply #9 on: 10/11/2014 04:35 AM »
That is truly weird!

Online chalz

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Re: SpaceX is hiring a farmer
« Reply #10 on: 10/11/2014 04:58 AM »
Wow this came out of left field...

My (probably silly) ideas:
They don't specify organic farming or other restrictions so it's not carbon credits or other corporate karma.
Maybe it's a crazy tax dodge because of the rural location. Though why would that be necessary after so long idk.
They have just bought an existing smallholding that they won't use for a few years.
Maybe they are investigating organic sources of methane.
WAG initial research on self sufficiency with relevance to remote colonies, but then they would need botanical researchers as well as farmers.
My best guess: its just for aesthetics, the test land is mostly safe zone and won't get built on, this is more inspiring than running a mower over it every month.

Offline 411rocket

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Re: SpaceX is hiring a farmer
« Reply #11 on: 10/11/2014 05:05 AM »
... I like how the job is ITAR restricted...

I have a couple of thoughts on this.

1) standardized form, that they did not modify, for this farming position.
2)Farmer will be working within the test site fencing & getting closer to the equipment on site, than others outside of the fences.

Pure speculation Perhaps the crops, are to block casual observations at ground level, from outside the  fences when crops are tall enough.

Maybe another feed source, for their local 4 legged (possibly future) Methane producers. As long as the "rocket cows" do not light the after burners when running away from the noise..........  ;)

Offline Halidon

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Re: SpaceX is hiring a farmer
« Reply #12 on: 10/11/2014 05:41 AM »
SpaceX better be alert. It's one thing to take on Boeing, Lockheed, ULA, etc. But taking on Monsanto? THAT is playing with fire.


 ;)


Offline Aerospace Dilettante

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Re: SpaceX is hiring a farmer
« Reply #13 on: 10/11/2014 06:16 AM »
By vigorously farming (with boo coo plowing and chemicals) the land around their future launch site, the chances that an Endangered Species Act critter will take up residence will be greatly reduced.

Don't want the elusive Lower Rio Grande Valley Dung Beetle to nix human colonization of space!   ::)

Offline Eric Hedman

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Re: SpaceX is hiring a farmer
« Reply #14 on: 10/11/2014 06:48 AM »
I think SpaceX just wants to get more revenue from the land they bought.  This is just like Cincinnati Inc. in Harrison Ohio.  Their factory sits on forty of their 700 acres.  The rest of their land has corn growing on it the last time I looked.  If you look at the machine tools they make http://www.e-ci.com/ why not do some farming on the rest of the land.  SpaceX probably has plenty of land that would otherwise sit idle so why not?
« Last Edit: 10/11/2014 06:49 AM by Eric Hedman »

Offline R7

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Re: SpaceX is hiring a farmer
« Reply #15 on: 10/11/2014 06:49 AM »
... I like how the job is ITAR restricted...

I don't!  :P ;)

SpaceX better be alert. It's one thing to take on Boeing, Lockheed, ULA, etc. But taking on Monsanto? THAT is playing with fire.

Monsanto is not what it used to be. Glyphosate patents have expired, I hope SpaceX develops ISRU gadget to produce it. I'd buy one! :)
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Offline docmordrid

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Re: SpaceX is hiring a farmer
« Reply #16 on: 10/11/2014 08:22 AM »
I think SpaceX just wants to get more revenue from the land they bought.  This is just like Cincinnati Inc. in Harrison Ohio.  Their factory sits on forty of their 700 acres. 
>

This isn't unusual in much of the Midwest. Some do it for profit, others team up with charities for community gardens which supply food banks and needy folks.

http://www.gcfb.org/site/PageServer?pagename=pg_volunteer_dteenergygarden
« Last Edit: 10/11/2014 08:27 AM by docmordrid »
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Offline deruch

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Re: SpaceX is hiring a farmer
« Reply #17 on: 10/11/2014 11:12 AM »
By vigorously farming (with boo coo plowing and chemicals) the land around their future launch site, the chances that an Endangered Species Act critter will take up residence will be greatly reduced.

Don't want the elusive Lower Rio Grande Valley Dung Beetle to nix human colonization of space!   ::)

Surely a "Dilettante" should know that it's spelled beaucoup. :-[ :D
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Online Dave G

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Re: SpaceX is hiring a farmer
« Reply #18 on: 10/11/2014 11:36 AM »
One possible explanation: Property Taxes.

Some state and local governments tax real estate at a much lower rate if it is active farm land.  With that kind of tax incentive, it could be cost effective to hire a farmer, even if the proceeds of farming aren't that significant.

Offline AncientU

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Re: SpaceX is hiring a farmer
« Reply #19 on: 10/11/2014 12:17 PM »
50 hours per week... Half time job for a farmer.
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